A family friend recently asked (regarding my veggie-loving, meat-free diet), “Lindsey, I just don’t understand what you order when you go out for fast food” to which I could only respond, “Well, I don’t eat fast food.” I realize this is a lifestyle choice, and the next few thoughts explore why it’s mine.
Now I think dinner in 20 minutes does count as (pretty-darn) fast food, but, yes, it requires planning ahead—precisely why I write this handy blog for you! The following grilled treat is healthy and creamy-wonderful; I simply do not believe there has to be a trade-off between enjoying food and treating your body well. Lately I’ve been considering whether this perspective is an adoptee thing?
It feels like people around me are always yapping about their genes, “A strong heart runs in the family, I just eat what I want…” Or persistent co-worker: “We’ve always had good cholesterol on Dad’s side, I don’t need to worry about sodium”. Maybe two decades of checking the not applicable box on those medical history forms has led me to the silly assumption I’ve got take things into my own
hands mouth and eat foods that will best provide my body with nutritious fuel. Adoptees often don’t know of historical health on which they can rely, not that this makes all of us vegetarians…
I love to eat, I live for cheese; I cook at home so my food can be delicious and controlled in salt and fat (motive: so I can live a long time traveling the world with Andrew, who has enviable genes). Call me nuts for considering this concoction a complete meal, but it was divine and followed by a well-earned a gelato date with the hubs. Andrew my Chicken-Loving Man loved this, called it restaurant material. Gene-ius 😉
Grilled Corn and Feta Bruschetta
based on a June 2011 recipe from Bon Appetit
2 ears corn, shucked
1 tbsp. vegetable oil
1/2 loaf fresh ciabatta bread
1/2 garlic clove
1/4 cup sour cream (or crema mexicana)
3 tbsp. crumbled feta
1 large tomato, chopped
fresh herbs (cilantro, basil, or chives)
fresh black pepper
Grill the corn
If you want to speed along the corn cooking (and avoid charred, raw kernels), consider partially cooking the cobs in the microwave. When ready to grill, rub the corn with vegetable oil and season with coarse salt and freshly ground black pepper. Grill over medium heat until lightly charred and tender. Slice corn off the cob in wide strips.
Season the Bread
Cut the loaf into one-inch slices; stack the slices and cut them in half (I found grilling smaller pieces the second night—not pictured—made for easier eating). Lightly brush the bread slices with olive oil and grill on each side until slightly charred (just 3 or so minutes on each side, keep on eye on ’em). Immediately rub the top of each slice with the cut side of the garlic—a rustic Italian technique you will love.
Assemble the bruschetta
Mix the sour cream with feta (I used fat-free sour cream).
Smear the toasts with the cheese mixture and top with the grilled corn and chopped tomatoes. Squeeze a generous amount of lime juice over each and garnish with your favorite herb (a must). Top with chili powder (also essential; I use a completely mild chili powder and it adds lovely smokey flavor to the corn and lime).
Without a Grill?
If you find this recipe as alluring as I did on paper, you can replicate it without a grill by cooking the corn (either in the oven with this fabulous method, or cutting off the cob and then sautéing in olive oil until tender). Brush the bread slices with olive oil and toast on a baking sheet in a 400F oven until lightly brown, rubbing the garlic on the bread as soon as it’s out of the oven.
Pepita and Spinach Salad
inspired by an April 2011 taco recipe from Epicurious
1 large tomato, chopped
1/4 cup roasted pepitas (pumpkin seeds)
1/3 cup canned chickpeas
3/4 cup packed spinach leaves, stacked, rolled, and thinly sliced
kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
1/2 avocado, peeled, seeded, cut into chunks
1 oz. feta cheese, crumbled
Combine the sliced spinach and tomatoes with a generous squeeze of fresh lime and small drizzle of olive oil, salt and pepper. Add the feta, avocado, chickpeas, and seeds just before serving.